Published on : Saturday, December 23, 2017
Gently embraced by century-old olive trees and the crystal blue Adriatic sea, San Domenico Golf is the top-rated golf course that was strongly pursued by Sergio Melpignano, the visionary Apulian entrepreneur who is responsible for bringing high end golf to Puglia.
Located a few steps away from the ancient mycenaean village of Egnathia (V century b.C.) and near the small evocative fishing village of Savelletri, San Domenico Golf is a classic Mediterranean links course deemed among the best in Italy. It was designed by architect Andy Haggar and built by London’s European Golf Design complying to the highest standards of the USGA specifications.
The 18-hole course is spread over 6,300 m and has a par of 72. It is made special by the distinctive scents and colours of the local Mediterranean Maquis: next to the low shrubs of thyme, rosemary, sage and mint you’ll find dozens of amazing century-old olive trees, their rare beauty epitomizing the uniqueness of this course. And not only the blue horizon embellishes this place, with every hole, green and fairway providing a spectacular view onto the sea, but wind also constantly blows, playing a significant role during gameplay.
The most remarkable holes are number 3, a beautiful and challenging par 3 that is over 200 meter long with an adverse wind often blowing; hole number 7, a magnificent par 4 overlooking an ancient olive grove; and hole number 16, a par 5, the longest (560 meters) and closest to the sea coast.
The grass used for the fairways is bermuda, while the roughs are made with festuca, insidious and apparently easy to manage, though actually quite difficult to deal with. As for the greens, the classic pencross variety was used, allowing for very fast surfaces. The greens are wide and, even if they don’t feature deceptive slopes, they are far from easy to tackle.
Along with strategic bunkering, fairway shaping and clever green design, the San Domenico Golf course provides players with an unforgettable golfing experience and a superb panorama: this is Mediterranean golf at its finest.
Opened in 2003, San Domenico Golf has hosted a number of major national and international golf tournaments for pro golfers, such as the Italian Omnium and P.G.A. championships and the Grand Final of the European Challenge Tour, while a wealth of famous players and golf stars have played here, including Martin Kaymer, Alvaro Quiros and Rafa Cabrera Bello.
San Domenico Golf lies opposite Borgo Egnazia, a true symbol and ambassador of Apulian hospitality across the world, while Masseria Cimino, a charming 18th Century farmhouse blending tradition and contemporary design, serves as its guesthouse. Both properties are part of SD Hotels Group, which has been pursuing the innovative hospitality vision of the Melpignano family since 1996 when the enchanting Masseria San Domenico was opened. The Group also includes Masseria Le Carrube, nestled in the countryside of Ostuni and the Li Veli winery and bistro and San Domenico House hotel in London.